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Rethinking Redistricting


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Indiana\'s Plan to End Gerrymandering.

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Rethinking Redistricting

  1. 1. RETHINKING REDISTRICTING Re-drawing legislative districts tobetter represent people, not politics.
  2. 2. .Il WhYis redistricting important? Few things are more important to our democratic system than the way we elect our states and our nations leaders. Thats why as Indianas Chief Elections Officer, Im starting an important discussion to shed light on the way Hoosiers select officials to represent us today and tomorrow. Many people arent aware of redistricting - the process of dividing the state into sections of voting populations. Even worse, national polling data from Pew Research shows that most voters dont care: 70 percent of those asked had no opinion about how redistricting is conducted in their state. But reforming this process is critical to fair and accountable representation and more competitive elections. Without fairly drawn districts, incumbents or political parties can manipulate voters through gerrymandering - shaping political boundaries for electoral advantage. In Indiana, this process has resulted in many oddly shaped districts that split counties and cities and ultimately diminish the voting power of many communities with shared interests. In addition, it leads to unnecessary confusion among voters. Today, this is how you are represented in our state government. And I believe there is a better way. To help advance discussion about redistricting in Indiana and ways we can make the system better, Im asking all Hoosiers to start Rethinking Redistricting by visiting www.rethinkingredistricting.comandjoiningtheconversation.This online resource provides a forum for constituents who want to have an active role in shaping their voting community and a voice in the decisions that will help ensure more competitive elections, united communities and a process influenced not by politics, but by people. Regards, /7 /7~ U~ ~ Todd Rokita IN D I A N A SEe R ETA RY 0 F STAT E People, not pol itics segments groups of constituents that are otherwise united through county, city and school district lines. In 2011, each state will redraw its boundaries for This criterion seeks to avoid unnecessary division of state and congressional districts based on the new voters who share the same community and often the 2010 census data. Its our hope that new criteria for same priorities, views and motivations. redrawing district lines can help create a system that is fair, sensible, easy to understand and that, most • Create districts that are more compact and importantly, serves the voters and not the legislators. geographically uniform A fair and effective redistricting plan will use A more logical system to redraw Indianas maps community-focused criteria to represent IndianaS would create more uniform districts. More than an constituents. By concentrating on community, such a plan aesthetic preference, this action would improve would redraw lines through a new system designed to: government accessibility and raise constituents awareness of their district and its distinct, local • Include no political data Maps created without considering how particular voters issues of concern. voted in previous elections will be inherently more fair and less likely to contribute to gerrymandering and • Maintain population balance other voter manipulation. Redrawingof district lines should be accomplished in , Keep communities of interest together a manner that continues to balance population, but not Some district lines are drawn in a way that be so stringent that the other criteria listed are devalued. Re-drawing legislative districts to better represent people, not politics. 2
  3. 3. .11 How we got here What do these look - like to you?Ln Indiana and most other states, the state legislature is responsible for redistricting every 10 years, after U.S. While they may look like many different things census data is collected. Under our current law, the to many different people, Indianas oddly shaped officials responsible for redrawing district lines are the legislative districts look like anything but fair very legislators already elected to represent the voters in for Hoosier voters. those districts. To many, that sounds like a conflict of interest. But its a system that Indiana has maintained as the status quo for more than half a century. OWings A o Two partially eaten pieces of pizza Legislators have a constitutional duty to draw the maps, o A spaceship and they should keep that duty. But for redistricting to work for Indiana voters, our lawmakers need new, better criteria for the upcoming round of redistricting in 201l. The district maps in use today were drawn in 2001, and o A choo-choo train are based on 2000 census data. Since those maps were o A dog with a club foot B .rawn, Indianas competitive field of candidates has o A mountain range become more and more shallow, with candidates in two out of every five legislative races running without major party candidate opposition. o Maps That Make Sense _ A tractor c o A squirrel We believe the proposed criteria will help us map a o A llama sound solution to Indianas redistricting challenges. The maps in this brochure are a prototype of what our district maps could have looked like today if these criteria were used with 2000 census data. Beyond o A staircase merely being easier to understand, a 2011 map based o o A caterpillar on the proposed criteria would result in voters choosing o A Pac Man maze their legislators (not the other way around), a widened .andidate field, more competitive races and less confusion for voters about who represents them. Re-drawing legislative districts to better represent people, not politics. 3
  4. 4. Ind iana Senate Legislative Districts In this map, the districts follow already existing political boundaries that better represent communities of interest.Re-drawing legislative districts to better represent people, not politics. 4
  5. 5. l C:===--=::I_ Indiana House Legislative Districts _1I:::: __ E1_ In addition to following county and township lines, in this map, every two house districts compose one senate district, greatly reducing voter confusion.Re-drawing legislative districts to better represent people, not politics. 5
  6. 6. Indiana Congressional DistrictsRe-drawing legislative districts to better represent people, not politics. I 6
  7. 7. Re-drawing legislative districts to better represent people, not politics. 7
  8. 8. • • • RETHINKING REDISTRICTINGII~_ ~ F"foItII/lltofllC4l." ~" ladilo SeuetlfJ of Slatelodd lolita~R E T H I N K~I:-::-N::-::G:--=R-=E="D:":I S=-=T=-=R::":"I="C T=-:-::-IN-=-=G lfiJE Problem 1: Communities split Rockport, IN house districts.•. "i"l FtMINocr.e..,~ __ lililo Seuetlry.f Sial! Toddlolita 1
  9. 9. ~R E T H J N K~JN~G~R~E~D~I~S~T~R""I"""C-:::T"""I N~G liffJ2 Problem 1: Communities split Morristown, IN Congressional districts Congressional District 8 Congressional District 4.•••• _- fi6tn1"~"r; ._ r I"au Stcretary f Slitl Todd loki1i 2
  10. 10. RETHINKING RE 2: Lack of compactness Milwaukee 203 mi Congressional District 8 Congressional District 4.••••• "HHi m. eMc.."" 11lli1i1 StuIUry of $iJ1Ifodd lotlta~---------------RETHINKING REDISTRICTING liJ2 Problem 3: Lack of competition • 40% of all legislative races lack major party opposition • Half of House districts favor a party by more than 30% • Since 2001, Senate leaders opposed 5 out of 16 opportunities. House leaders 19 out of 32 times~••• : FiOInIfi*_"cuil •.Inllm Secrlury of Sutllodd Rotlta 3
  11. 11. 9 Hamilton County House Districts (Also has 5•.•• _ ,11oInl-fIotiIC..f _/ l!dilu Seu!lllJafSblelodd lokltl Senate districts)~--------------~-------RETHINKING REDISTRICTING li9- Problem 5: Complicated election administration • In Indiana, elections take 30,000 people to run 5500 precincts - all with multiple ballot variations. • The concept maps show that the number of ballot styles can be greatly reduced. - Johnson County could have 1/3 of the current number of ballot styles. - Elkhart County could have 1/2 of the current number of ballot styles. 4
  12. 12. ~R E T H I N K=IN-G~R--E--D""I~S--T--R-I--C--T-I N~G EJ. The solution: Maps drawn based on .... - Keeping communities of interest together (21 states) - Compactness (36 states) - Following known community boundaries (44 states) - No political data for partisanship (12 states do this)~---RETHINKING REDISTRICTING lJJ. What Could Have Been What Could Have Been One of many possibilities) 5
  13. 13. ..1§;R E TH J N K=lN=cr-R=E"O-1~S"T"R"":I"C"T~I--N~G lJ!). What Could Have Been",••_ """;fWofIIIOtotfI " 114m Secreliry af SlltelOOllIo~ta~R E T H J N K-r N-G-R-E-O---S .••.R---CT--,N-G T ••. ••. What Could Have Been What Is What Could Have Been (Indiana House) (One of !l1any possibilities) 6
  14. 14. ~-----------~~REDISTRICTINGRETHINKING What Could Have Been What Is (Indiana House) What Could Have Been •.. - (One of many possibilities) •~-----------=---=~RETHINKING REDISTRICTING What Could Have Been What Is What Could Have Been (In~i_anaSenate) (One of many possibilities) 7
  15. 15. ~~=---=~Ri2KI;h:~D~~:;~T~:ve Been What Could Have Been (One of many possibilities)RETHINK~IN~G~R~E~D~I~S~T~R~IC~T~I~N~G~ lP- Added Benefit: Nesting - Each senate district could be split into two house districts - More accountability - Less confusion.•.;,.~"", AoooIn,/Moffc • .,~ ~, lallm Ster!tarylrSuteTodd lokita 8
  16. 16. ~R E T H I N K~I N~G~R:-:E:"":D~I S:"":T=R-:-I ~C~T~J""N~G lffiJ. Nesting Example Nesting Example: Fayette, Union, Franklin, Dearborn, Ohio, Switzerland and part of Ripley.~ ~ ,"NdM eMc..,p..•, IAdm SeuetJryofSilIITOOd Rollia.J§"_~ __RETHINKING REDISTRICTING l5J1!. The Solution 1: Keep communities of interest together 1 Rockport - a single house member 1 9
  17. 17. ~R E T H J N K~I N:-::-::G:--::R:-:E::-:O~ S::":T=R":" ~C~T~-:-N~G.liJ!. The Solution 2: Compact districts Would this be better? Congressional District 8 Today.- ••• i. f«tfIilMomo..,~ IAdiIiSeaeliryofSlilefoddRotitl j~R E T H J N K~l N:-::-::G:-::R:-:E::-:O~ S::":T=R":" ~C-=T:-:"-:-N~G lJi). The Solution 2: Compact districts Would this be better? Congressional District 4 10
  18. 18. Current (9) Would this be better? (4) r I, I ,, , , / - ,~ / .-J~ 1~:"""~~ ~••..••• "Ffoon,.ofIkotI.r Hamilton County House Districts~ ,_, IAdilll Setrelil) 81 SIII!lodd Rollta~-----RETHINKING REDISTRICTING liJZ Maps that pass legal muster These maps are constitutional and legal. Created by an experienced mapping company. - Follow the four criteria, including not using incumbent addresses or voting history - Incorporate nesting - Comply with the Constitution and the Voting Rights Act Many other states have established criteria. We cant let this effort get bogged down by confused legal premises or selected application of the law. 11
  19. 19. ~ WR E T H I N K~l::-:"N=-=G:-=:-R n =e D=-I:-::S:-=T~R-:-:I C:::":::T::-::I:":N-=G Why consider maps like this? More competition More accountability for lawmakers Easier access to lawmakers Easier/less costly election administration",.•• _ • RMtIMotfca6ff .. Indllll Secret.irJ If SIlIe Todd Roklta , --,------------~---- RETHINKING REDISTRICTING • .--~ - . -- --~.- ~1,..orlIeeef~_ Ildlu SeamIJ.f Slitl TOOdlDiiti 12